Collecting signatures for candidates for presidency have started on December 29. Initiative group of Kazulin have also started collecting signatures. Kazulin used to be rector of Belarusian State university. After he was dismissed he started to identify himself as a democrat. But he faced some problems. Members of his initiative group have to visit flats where former students of BSU who had been expelled for their political activities live.
On December 29 activists of Zubr movement carried out action “Jeans is your freedom in the central square of Barysau. “Zubr” activists were putting jeans bands on New year tree. Another activists dressed as Santa Clauses were handing out jeans bands to passers by”.
“Our ancestors had a century-long tradition: when an enemy women and children, captured women and children as prisoners, a Pahonya (Chase) was announced. All men mounted horses and were driving enemies until all captives were released. Today the Belarusians, first of all men, must mobilize and unite to release from captivity our dear Motherland, Belarus. We have 80 days for that. Every evening each of us must ask himself, what have I done for liberation of Belarus? Our adversary is not a weak one. He is called the last dictator of Europe. His political idols are the greatest villains, Adolph Hitler and Josef Stalin. The head of his election headquarters is accused by the Council of Europe of political assassinations of opposition leaders. But Belarus deserves better future. For the first time in many years we have an intelligent, trustworthy, powerful leader. Alyaksandr Milinkevich’s polls are growing rapidly. In Minsk, in Hrodna region, in a number of other cities, according to the Gallup service, it is higher than Lukashenka’s rating. God gives us another chance. And we must use it,” said the coordinator of the civil initiative Charter’97 Zmitser Bandarenka two days before the year 2006.
Letters are received by the Charter’97 press center. Our readers tell us how the collection of signatures in support of Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s nomination is taking place. “Yesterday two women approached me and offered to sign for Lukashenka. I asked them who they are. They answered that they work as teachers in a school-gymnasium. Then I asked whether they volunteered to collect signatures for Lukashenka, or they were forced. The women said energetically that they had been forced. I wanted to ask: “Why do you submit? Why don’t you protest against this hideous coercion?” But I just managed to say “why…”, and the women turned round and went away. Why have they run away?” a dweller of Minsk wrote to the Charter’97 press –center.
Today is the birthday of the political prisoner, one of the leaders of the Young Front Paval Sevyarynets. Paval marks his 29 years in the village of Malae Sitna, Vitsebsk region. He serves a term of corrective labour for organizing protest rallies against falsifications of results of the parliamentary elections and referendum. He was sentenced to 3 years of restraint of liberty. We congratulate Paval and believe that he will be free next year, and all the political prisoners of Belarus will be free, and that Belarus will become free as well. For our and your freedom!
The Central Election Committee summed up the results of forming of 165 territorial commissions. The details about their composition have not been revealed by the Central Election Committee yet. However oppositional political parties state that their members were not included to election commissions.
On December 29 in the town of Belazyorsk, Brest region, policemen detained Uladzimir Kazeka, the head of the Ivanava district headquarters of the democratic candidate, and took him to a police department. It was informed by the press-group of Alyaksandr Milinkevich’s headquarters.
A group of independent observers won’t carry out a large-scale monitoring of presidential elections, Mikalay Astrejka, coordinator of independent observation over the parliamentary elections and constitutional referendum in October 2004 told to the BelaPAN. As said by Astrejka, it is connected with impossibility to carry out a full-fledged observation at the presidential elections in 2006. “The elections have been announced so urgently that it would be rather difficult to organize the monitoring equivalent to the observation at the parliamentary elections in 2004. We cannot organize early observation. We were not able to observer nomination of candidates to the members of territorial election commissions, for instance,” M. Astrejka said.
On December 29 Alyaksandr Lukashenka issued a Decree number 639. He released from office Stanislau Buko, former chairman of the Committee on Affairs of Religions and Nationalities by the Council of Ministers of Belarus in connection with transfer to another job. On the same day Lukashenka signed a decree number 640, appointing Leanid Hulyaka the chairman of the Committee on Affairs of Religions and Nationalities. Earlier Leanid Hulyaka was a minister of culture.